This afternoon, the Ontario Hockey League announced the results of their 2017-18 coaches poll. The OHL Coaches Poll provides coaches with the opportunity to recognize the top three players in 20 different skill categories within their own conference. The Colorado Avalanche have only two prospects currently playing in the OHL, Conor Timmins and Travis Barron - both of whom were recognized in the poll.
Barron - the 191st overall selection in the 2016 draft was named both the Hardest Worker and the Best Body Checker in the Eastern Conference. After a rough 2016-17 season, the captain of the Ottawa 67s adopted a new summer training program this past offseason, and it has paid off in a big way. Barron has been 52 points in 64 games and has turned himself into one of the best defensive forwards in the OHL.
He’s still a long-shot to ever be a regular in the NHL, but Barron has come a long way and looks like he’ll have a pretty decent professional career ahead of him.
1. Travis Barron, Ottawa 67’s (30)
2. Brett Neumann, Kingston Frontenacs (14)
3. Sam Miletic, Niagara IceDogs (13)
Best Body Checker:
1. Travis Barron, Ottawa 67’s (22) – finished second in 2016-17
2. Ted Nichol, Kingston Frontenacs (13)
3. Tyler Tucker, Barrie Colts (11)
In the Western Conference, Conor Timmins was named the best Defensive Defenseman, despite missing nearly two months of the season with a high-ankle sprain. The 32nd overall selection in last year’s draft, Timmins has been the best all-around defenseman in the OHL for two years now. He is the catalyst for the best team in Canadian major junior hockey and will likely make a short stop in the AHL next season before making an impact on Colorado’s lineup.
After recently signing his entry-level contract with the Avalanche, Timmins has just returned to the Sault Ste Marie lineup and is set for a long playoff run with hopes of leading the Greyhounds to the Memorial Cup.
1. Conor Timmins, Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds (43)
2. Keaton Middleton, Saginaw Spirit (14)
3. Connor Hall, Kitchener Rangers (10)